Murder charge in fatal stabbing of man waiting for train

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Anthony Bowker was charged with second-degree murder in the weekend stabbing of a man waiting for the light-rail train at the Lake Street station, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Wednesday. 

Bowker, 25, of Minneapolis, was charged with repeatedly stabbing 58-year-old Gerald Wayne Davis Saturday afternoon. Davis, who lived with family in St. Paul, was pronounced dead at the Hennepin County Medical Center.

“The complaint alleges that Mr. Bowker, on Dec. 6, 2014 at 1:30 p.m., killed a fifty-eight-year-old victim on the light-rail station on Lake Street,” Freeman said. “Apparently, the victim had interaction with Mr. Bowker’s father, brother and another individual on the street and we don’t know exactly what was said but the hand gestures indicate it was not a friendly encounter.”

According to the criminal complaint, investigators reviewed video that showed Bowker’s companions standing on Lake Street. When Davis walked by, the group appeared to have words with Davis, but after a few seconds, Davis walked away and entered the light-rail station. That incident occurred about 15 minutes before the stabbing and Bowker was not with the group during that time, the complaint states.

When Bowker eventually joined the group, they talked on the sidewalk and then Bowker ran into the light-rail station. Video indicated that Bowker went to the upper platform where the tracks are and appeared to be searching for someone. Some of his companions arrived and pointed out Davis, who was waiting to get on the train, according to the complaint.

Witnesses and video indicated that as Bowker moved towards Davis with a switchblade knife, Davis ran. However, when Davis was opening the door to the stairs, Bowker caught him and stabbed him repeatedly in the shoulders and neck. Davis eventually got away and walked down the stairs, before collapsing to the floor. Bowker followed and kicked Davis in the head, the complaint states.

“This is senseless,” Freeman said. “This is tragic and there was no reason for it. People walk by each other on the street and they have some kind of exchange and 15 minutes later someone is stabbing someone and killing him. I’m thankful it doesn’t happen very often in our city, but when it does, police will investigate it and we will charge.”

Freeman said excellent video from the light-rail station, combined with good work by Metro Transit and Minneapolis Police led to the charges against the defendant.

Bowker is expected to make his first appearance Thursday and prosecutors are asking for bail of $2 million.

Bowker Criminal Complaint (PDF)

Watch video of the press conference.